With respect to linear tracking arms, I have some, albeit limited, experience. I used an Eminent Technology air bearing tangential arm on a Sota Sapphire table. No big deal. Sound quality no better than a decent pivoted arm. And the air pump, etc was a pain. I have been avoiding linear trackers ever since.
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@chakster I heard the Nakamichi turntable with auto centering feature back in the 1980s at M&K Sound in Los Angeles. At the time, it was the finest LP sound I had ever heard. Dyanamic and without wow problems.
I had a choice of a Linn table in 1981. I purchased the VPI 19-1 instead. It sounded better. Then in 2005, I bought a fully loaded VPI TNT VI. It sounded blah until I placed it on a Townsend Seismic Sink, then it became the table it can be. I still use the VPI 19-4 for 78s and it is super dynamic. Neither table is unattractive although the VPI 19 does look pedestrian but so what?
Commonwealth 12/D if you can find one.
Not all vintage is good. If it was a top pro deck back then it’ll be up there now. Not all modern is good. Same rule applies. If it is good now it’ll hold it’s own in the future. As a record producer and mastering engineer cutting vinyl everyday we have 7 turntables and a lathe. We use the best of breed both ancient and modern. No bias except that the good vintage stuff was not built to a price. It was built to last and the professional side of the business using and making the products had big R&D budgets: RCA, Decca, EMI, Western Electric, BBC. Those budgets have shrunk now. The only money being spent is for high end home stuff now or pro software. This is why good vintage matches good modern. Emphasis on the word “good”.
Also it depends on the application. For my radio show, Technics. It’s not all about sonics in that scenario because the output is compressed and normalised.
It’s more about useable and reliable gear.
In the studio flat response and several reference decks to be sure. EMT, Audio Note, Rega, lathe in playback mode and TW Acustic.
At home musicality and aesthetics are more important.
For me only the Commonwealth does it all. Like an EMT but built like a lathe. It’s actually quiet for an idler too.
He thought it should cost $40K instead of $20K. I kid you not. They were from Asia somewhere and were trying to impress their friendsThx for response. I believe you. For some, what is important is how much they paid for. The more they pay, the less chance other people can afford, which will make them feel that they are something special. Like those who carry Gucci and Chanel bags. Yes, some of those super rich (not necessarily Asians but many other too) will think 20k is too little to spend for turntables and other audio gears for them to show off. Well, nothing wrong in the modern economy.
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